‘Metal makes a comeback to Chennai!’ Chaos, Godless, Vidyut & Godia set to rock DYI gig
Manu Krishnan, drummer of the band Chaos, drops a bombshell a few minutes into a chat. “This year, there hasn’t been a single metal gig in Chennai!” he exclaims. “The metal scene has been completely dead over the last few years in the city.”
Thankfully, Chaos has picked up on the idea of DIY gigs, a simple self-sustained formula that’s being successfully employed by many indie acts in India, and overseas. At the gig, themed and hosted by Brutal Carnage, this Sunday, Chaos will play alongside the bands, Godless from Hyderabad, and the city-based acts Vidyut (old-school thrash/death metal) and Godia (metalcore).
As for Manu, the earnestness rings true as he affirms, “I really want to bring back the metal scene to Chennai!” Not surprisingly, the gig’s flyers and posters echo Manu’s sentiment, with the exhortation: “Metal makes a comeback to Chennai!” The hosts add, “Heavier and wilder than ever with an insane line up. Come out and take out your #aggressivetendencies.”
Essentially a Trivandrum-based band — featuring Jayakrishnan S (vocals), Vishnu Rajendranath (bass) and Nikhil NR (lead guitars), apart from Manu — Chaos was actually set to play a gig in Cochin the same week that the floods hit Kerala, earlier in August this year.
“We had to cancel the gig, and each of us got into our own rescue mode,” recalls Manu. At least some of the angst conveyed in their music relates to ground realities that they face on a day-to-day basis, explains Manu.
Their second album, All Against All (2017), in fact, makes an impassioned plea to acknowledge the misplaced anxieties of urban society. “The grand design has failed / Humanity derailed / Embrace the tragic fate / This legacy of hate,” rallies the album’s title track.
The track Enemy makes a strident call for an uprising with a refrain that strikes home like a dull thud on the back of the neck: “Your god is the enemy / Your faith your weakness.”
Angst amped in tune
The avowedly atheistic persuasions are a lot more stated in the music of the deathrash act, Godless. Bassist Abbas Razvi explains, “Our music has a lot of aggression, it’s very wild, with a lot of screaming... and in some way, relates to problems we face in real life.” Racism, division of people, spats in the name of religion — these are the concerns that raise the ire of Godless, and prompt its members to turn the electricity of their hairs standing on end into music.
With Kaushal LS (vocals), Ravi Nidamarthy and Rohit Nair (guitars) and Aniketh Yadav (drums), apart from Abbas, the band is currently midway through a promo tour for their second album, the five-track EP, Swarm.
Feedback for the release has been heartening, avers Kaushal, as a metal magazine went so far as to compare them to American metal icons, Slayer.
Godless identifies itself as a “thrash-influenced death metal band”, clarifies Kaushal, while emphasising that they’re all-too consumed by serious subjects, such as of corruption, caste disputes, belief systems and mislaid faith — and they really couldn’t be bothered about giggly bubblegum pop.
In addition, the vocalist rattles off themes like “Reanimation of the dead, cosmic horror, zombification, the occult...”, speaking of their undying interest in all things macabre, with an essential nod to the hugely influential horror fiction of the late HP Lovecraft.
While all of that ought to sound like music to Chennai’s metal fans, the bands themselves are set to rock one helluva ear-shredding gig. Be sure to pick up copies of their music, and merchandise!
At Sherlock’s Grand Royal Pub on December 2. Tickets at `350.